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  1. #46
    CC International Master TheJoker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    Who says that hours worked mean most efficient? Efficiency usually means output per man hour, so without the output, we can't know the efficiency.
    It GDP per man hour. Read the post more carefully.

  2. #47
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    Home-schooling

    Is it still true that home-schooling is much more difficult to do in QLD than in NSW or NZ? In the group of home-schooling parents we participated in in NSW, some had come from QLD where they had not been able to home-school. Too many hoops to overcome. Its also for some reason easier to get authorised to home-school in NZ than in NSW...we had to show intended curriculum, convince a govt person we were competent etc. here.
    God exists. Short and to the point.

    Secretary of, and regularly arbiter at, Rooty Hill RSL Chess Club. See www.rootyhillchessclub.org.

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  3. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheJoker
    Show me some stats and from Australia not the US we all know that there school system is up the sh*t.

    Have a look at which countries top with world in education statistics and then tell me if they are predominately public or private schooling systems.
    The US system is up the proverbial fecal watercourse precisely because of the strong teachers union monopoly. Yet more and more money is thrown at them, which is typical of government-run things: failure is rewarded. Yet American kids do worse than kids from other countries with far less money. John Stossel points out:

    This should come as no surprise since public education in the USA is a government monopoly. If you don't like your public school? Tough. If the school is terrible? Tough. Your taxes fund that school regardless of whether it's good or bad.

    Government monopolies routinely fail their customers.

    Kaat Vandensavel runs a Belgian government school, but in Belgium, school funding follows students, even to private schools. So Vandensavel has to work hard to impress the parents. "If we don't offer them what they want for their child, they won't come to our school." That pressure makes a world of difference, she says. It forces Belgian schools to innovate in order to appeal to parents and students. Vandensavel's school offers extra sports programs and classes in hairdressing, car mechanics, cooking, and furniture building. She told us, "We have to work hard day after day. Otherwise you just [go] out of business."

    "That's normal in Western Europe," Harvard economist Caroline Hoxby told me. "If schools don't perform well, a parent would never be trapped in that school in the same way you could be trapped in the U.S."

    Vandensavel adds, "America seems like a medieval country …
    a Communist country on the educational level, because there's no freedom of choice — not for parents, not for pupils."



    Accountability is why universities and private schools perform better. Every day they are held accountable by parents and students, and if they fail the kids, school administrators lose their jobs. Public school officials almost never lose jobs.

    Government schools are accountable only to their fellow politicians, and that kind of accountability is virtually no accountability.

    The public schools are cheating the children.
    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

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  4. #49
    CC International Master TheJoker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    The minimum wage is actually zero.
    So what happens when there is a labour surplus, employers with the market advantage can pay wages below the poverty standards. I think I prefer a safety net.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    Interesting that even under your own assumptions, the economically free are all fairly high up in the minimum wage stakes.
    There my assumptions there based on OECD stats.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    Who cares about the gap? Leftists would whinge if a genie magically doubled everyone's real wealth, because that would double the gap between rich and poor!
    I was talking about the gap as percentag eof total wealth in which case if doubled everybodies wealth the percentage gap would remain the same.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    And the "hours per week" means little
    Maybe to those who dont work might think that. as for the rest of us it is pretty important not to have to work such long hours.



    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    In practice, your lefty ideas lead to low standard of living for all but the well connected.
    my ideas aren't lefty they are mainstream i am arguing for maintaining the status quo albeit with minor changes.

    Anyway I'll leave it at that!
    Last edited by TheJoker; 24-01-2008 at 11:48 PM.

  5. #50
    CC Grandmaster Adamski's Avatar
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    Hours per week

    Quote Originally Posted by TheJoker
    Maybe to those who dont work might think that. as for the rest of us it is pretty important.
    Hours per week is not a great measure. It gets inflated by workaholics (in many countries) who work too many hours and neglect family and often their own well-being. I worked at one company where 16 hour days were the norm - I resigned, it was too much.
    God exists. Short and to the point.

    Secretary of, and regularly arbiter at, Rooty Hill RSL Chess Club. See www.rootyhillchessclub.org.

    Psephological insight. "Controversial will only lose you votes. Courageous will lose you the election." Sir Humphrey Appleby on Yes Minister.

    Favorite movie line: Girl friend Cathy to Jack Ryan in "Sum of all Fears". "What kind of emergency does an historian have?".

  6. #51
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    Milton Friedman, Nobel laureate in economics:
    What's Wrong with Our Schools?
    From Free to Choose: A Personal Statement, 1979/1980.

    Indeed, we believe that the penalty that is now imposed on parents who do not send their children to public schools violates the spirit of the First Amendment, whatever lawyers and judges may decide about the letter. Public schools teach religion, too not a formal, theistic religion, but a set of values and beliefs that constitute a religion in all but name. The present arrangements abridge the religious freedom of parents who do not accept the religion taught by the public schools yet are forced to pay to have their children indoctrinated with it, and to pay still more to have their children escape indoctrination.
    Last edited by Capablanca-Fan; 24-01-2008 at 11:42 PM.
    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

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  7. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono2
    Hours per week is not a great measure. It gets inflated by workaholics (in many countries) who work too many hours and neglect family and often their own well-being. I worked at one company where 16 hour days were the norm - I resigned, it was too much.
    Jono2, I probably wasn't clear in my post. What I meant was for those of use that work hard, we dont want to have to work long hours.

    I felt that the countries that work less hours per week have a better standard of living for the reasons you mention above.

  8. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheJoker
    So what happens when there is a labour surplus, employers with the market advantage can pay wages below the poverty standards.
    No, employers won't pay above what an employer's productivity is worth. So all they do is price people out of jobs. And historically they have been used nefariously. Thomas Sowell, a black economist, writes:

    Let us go back a few generations in the United States. We need not speculate about racial discrimination because it was openly spelled out in laws in the Southern states, where most blacks lived, and was not unknown in the North.

    Yet in the late 1940s, the unemployment rate among young black men was not only far lower than it is today but was not very different from unemployment rates among young whites the same ages. Every census from 1890 through 1930 showed labor force participation rates for blacks to be as high as, or higher than, labor force participation rates among whites.

    Why are things so different today in the United States — and so different among Muslim young men in France? That is where economics comes in.

    People who are less in demand — whether because of inexperience, lower skills, or race — are just as employable at lower pay rates as people who are in high demand are at higher pay rates. That is why blacks were just as able to find jobs as whites were, prior to the decade of the 1930s and why a serious gap in unemployment between black teenagers and white teenagers opened up only after 1950.

    Prior to the decade of the 1930s, the wages of inexperienced and unskilled labor were determined by supply and demand. There was no federal minimum wage law and labor unions did not usually organize inexperienced and unskilled workers. That is why such workers were able to find jobs, just like everyone else, even when these were black workers in an era of open discrimination.

    The first federal minimum wage law, the Davis-Bacon Act of 1931, was passed in part explicitly to prevent black construction workers from "taking jobs" from white construction workers by working for lower wages. It was not meant to protect black workers from "exploitation" but to protect white workers from competition.

    And most people on minimum wages are supporting a family and about half are part-time. Also, the vast majority don't stay there. A Cato Institute study sowed that their pay increases an average of 30 percent in just their first year of employment. So these starting jobs are valuable for the experience, which minimum wage laws deny to many people.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheJoker
    I think I prefer a safety net.
    There is nothing safe about a poverty trap. Sowell writes elsewhere:

    The minimum wage law is very cleverly misnamed. The real minimum wage is zero — and that is what many inexperienced and low-skilled people receive as a result of legislation that makes it illegal to pay them what they are currently worth to an employer.

    Most economists have long recognized that minimum wage laws increase unemployment among the least skilled, least experienced, and minority workers. With a little experience, these workers are likely to be worth more. But they cannot move up the ladder if they can't get on the ladder.

    That is the real tragedy of the real minimum wage — zero. It is not just the money that these young people miss. It is the experience that can turn out to be far more valuable to them than the first paychecks they take home.

    This is especially tragic in the Third World, where multinational corporations may be pressured into setting wages well above what the local labor market conditions would justify. This pressure often comes from self-righteous people back home who mount shrill demonstrations in the mistaken belief that they are helping poor people overseas.

    Half a century ago, Professor Peter Bauer of the London School of Economics pointed out that "a striking feature of many under-developed countries is that money wages are maintained at high levels" while "large numbers are seeking but unable to find work."

    These people can least afford to get the minimum wage of zero, just so that their would-be saviors can feel noble, or so that labor unions in Europe or America can price them out of a job, in order to protect their own members' jobs.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheJoker
    I was talking about the gap as percentag eof total wealth in which case if doubled everybodies wealth the percentage gap would remain the same.
    Even then, by your lefty standard, there would be no improvement because the gap hasn't closed.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheJoker
    Maybe to those who dont work might think that. as for the rest of us it is pretty important not to have to work such long hours.
    Those who work long hours are often in high-powered jobs.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheJoker
    my ideas aren't lefty they are mainstream i am arguing for maintaining the status quo albeit with minor changes.
    It is very out of kilter with the majority of economists.
    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

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  9. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    It is very out of kilter with the majority of economists.
    You mean the three economists who agree with your extreme rightwing completely unregulated free market?

  10. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    The minimum wage law is very cleverly misnamed. The real minimum wage is zero — and that is what many inexperienced and low-skilled people receive as a result of legislation that makes it illegal to pay them what they are currently worth to an employer.
    The trouble is that employers of the low-waged have an economic interest in paying low skilled employees as little as possible, and don't necessarily care what they are worth as long as it is more than they have to pay. The result in a completely unregulated job market and an environment of economic downturn is an underclass of people who are paid far, far less than they are worth.

    Australia has a pretty strong minimum wage, and this does not seem to have prevented us from having unemployment at pretty near to minimum levels.

  11. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by pax
    The trouble is that employers of the low-waged have an economic interest in paying low skilled employees as little as possible,
    Well, employees have an economic interest in earning as much as possible for their work, customers have an economic interest in paying as little for items, sellers have an economic interest in getting the best price for them ... Do you have anything more than an economic truism?

    Quote Originally Posted by pax
    and don't necessarily care what they are worth as long as it is more than they have to pay.
    First, same applies to the other groups above. Second, employers don't want to lose money by paying someone more than what his productivity justifies. But if the minimum wage is $8/hr, I fail to see why a teenager is worse off being employed at $7.50 with on-the-job training than being unemployed.

    Quote Originally Posted by pax
    The result in a completely unregulated job market and an environment of economic downturn is an underclass of people who are paid far, far less than they are worth.
    What does it mean, "less than they are worth". If an employer pays much less than the employee's productivity is worth, another employer might offer more. As Friedman pointed out long ago, competition between multiple employers are the best protection workers have. Unions on the other hand are great for their own members, those that can join, but at the cost of other workers.

    Quote Originally Posted by pax
    Australia has a pretty strong minimum wage, and this does not seem to have prevented us from having unemployment at pretty near to minimum levels.
    Howards IR reforms had something to do with that. And the LDP/Friedman negative taxation idea would help even more in getting rid of Centrelink bullying of the unemployed as well as getting rid of the poverty trap where an unemployed person might be worse off taking a job.
    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

    “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy. We must be cautious.” — Obi-Wan Kenobi on the UN kakistocracy

  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by pax
    You mean the three economists who agree with your extreme rightwing completely unregulated free market?
    If allowing people freedom of buying or selling is "extreme rightwing", then I'm all for it! But it's many more than three who oppose minimum wage laws. Sowell writes in Minimum Wage Escalation:

    Because of inflation, minimum wage levels have been periodically reviewed, and therefore the general issues and growing evidence on the actual effects of the Fair Labor Standards Act have also been reviewed. What an automatic escalation provision means is that we stop looking at the evidence. And we would stop at a time when a growing body of research by independent economists around the country is documenting the negative effects of the minimum wage law—and particularly its devastating impact on job opportunities for minority teenagers.1
    Minimum wage laws have been aptly described as “anathema to economists.”2 Even though 88 percent of academic economists supported the “war on poverty,” 61 percent of those same economists opposed the minimum wage law.3 In short, this is not opposition based on philosophy or political leanings, but on economic analysis and on the mounting factual evidence that the law increases unemployment among the very people intended to be benefited. Moreover, economic research has also revealed a disturbing correlation between teenage unemployment rates and teenage crime rates.4 In view of this, this seems like a particularly inappropriate time to stop looking at the evidence by putting in an escalator clause that will give the law a life of its own, independent of its effects on people.
    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

    “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy. We must be cautious.” — Obi-Wan Kenobi on the UN kakistocracy

  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    If allowing people freedom of buying or selling is "extreme rightwing", then I'm all for it! But it's many more than three who oppose minimum wage laws. Sowell writes in Minimum Wage Escalation:
    It's ironic that you again resort to quoting Sowell.

  14. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    It is very out of kilter with the majority of economists.
    Every single developed country has a regulated market enconomy. Not a single unregulated market economy is the world! I think that it because the majority of economists agree that there needs to be some market regulation.

    Anyway I can see I am so I think we will just have to agree to disagree. And I can take comfort in the fact that your totally unregulated market approach doesn't look likely to be adopted by any country anytime soon.

  15. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by pax
    It's ironic that you again resort to quoting Sowell.
    Why is it "ironic"? It would be ironic if I had previously criticised him.
    “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.” — Abba Eban on the UN general assembly

    “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy. We must be cautious.” — Obi-Wan Kenobi on the UN kakistocracy

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